TECHNICAL EVALUATION OF TEMPORAL GROUNDWATER MONITORING VARIABILITY IN MW66 AND NEARBY WELLS, PADUCAH GASEOUS DIFFUSION PLANT

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Evaluation of disposal records, soil data, and spatial/temporal groundwater data from the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP) Solid Waste Management Unit (SWMU) 7 indicate that the peak contaminant concentrations measured in monitoring well (MW) 66 result from the influence of the regional PGDP NW Plume, and does not support the presence of significant vertical transport from local contaminant sources in SWMU 7. This updated evaluation supports the 2006 conceptualization which suggested the high and low concentrations in MW66 represent different flow conditions (i.e., local versus regional influences). Incorporation of the additional lines of evidence from data collected since 2006 provide ... continued below

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Looney, B. & Eddy-Dilek, C. August 28, 2012.

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Evaluation of disposal records, soil data, and spatial/temporal groundwater data from the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP) Solid Waste Management Unit (SWMU) 7 indicate that the peak contaminant concentrations measured in monitoring well (MW) 66 result from the influence of the regional PGDP NW Plume, and does not support the presence of significant vertical transport from local contaminant sources in SWMU 7. This updated evaluation supports the 2006 conceptualization which suggested the high and low concentrations in MW66 represent different flow conditions (i.e., local versus regional influences). Incorporation of the additional lines of evidence from data collected since 2006 provide the basis to link high contaminant concentrations in MW66 (peaks) to the regional 'Northwest Plume' and to the upgradient source, specifically, the C400 Building Area. The conceptual model was further refined to demonstrate that groundwater and the various contaminant plumes respond to complex site conditions in predictable ways. This type of conceptualization bounds the expected system behavior and supports development of environmental cleanup strategies, providing a basis to support decisions even if it is not feasible to completely characterize all of the 'complexities' present in the system. We recommend that the site carefully consider the potential impacts to groundwater and contaminant plume migration as they plan and implement onsite production operations, remediation efforts, and reconfiguration activities. For example, this conceptual model suggests that rerouting drainage water, constructing ponds or basin, reconfiguring cooling water systems, capping sites, decommissioning buildings, fixing (or not fixing) water leaks, and other similar actions will potentially have a 'direct' impact on the groundwater contaminant plumes. Our conclusion that the peak concentrations in MW66 are linked to the regional PGDP NW Plume does not imply that there TCE is not present in SWMU 7. The available soil and groundwater data indicate that the some of the waste disposed in this facility contacted and/or were contaminated by TCE. In our assessment, the relatively small amount of TCE associated with SWMU 7 is not contributing detectable TCE to the groundwater and does not represent a significant threat to the environment, particularly in an area where remediation and/or management of TCE in the NW plume will be required for an extended timeframe. If determined to be necessary by the PGDP team and regulators, additional TCE characterization or cleanup activities could be performed. Consistent with the limited quantity of TCE in SWMU 7, we identify a range of low cost approaches for such activities (e.g., soil gas surveys for characterization or SVE for remediation). We hope that this information is useful to the Paducah team and to their regulators and stakeholders to develop a robust environmental management path to address the groundwater and soil contamination associated with the burial ground areas.

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  • Report No.: SRNL-STI-2012-00513-R1
  • Grant Number: DE-AC09-08SR22470
  • DOI: 10.2172/1049526 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1049526
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc839454

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  • August 28, 2012

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 9:45 a.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 1:38 p.m.

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Looney, B. & Eddy-Dilek, C. TECHNICAL EVALUATION OF TEMPORAL GROUNDWATER MONITORING VARIABILITY IN MW66 AND NEARBY WELLS, PADUCAH GASEOUS DIFFUSION PLANT, report, August 28, 2012; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc839454/: accessed July 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.